INWOOD — It may not be a trendy clothing store or new restaurant, but Inwood’s new hardware store has gotten a lot of attention since opening its doors on Friday.
Nearly two years after Dick’s Hardware, an Inwood institution for nearly 40 years went out of business, an Inwood newcomer has brought an Upper West Side standby to the same location.
Shabbir Ali and his two brothers decided to open Burhan Hardware at 4947 Broadway, between 207th and 211th streets, after canvasing neighborhoods for an ideal second location in Manhattan. Their first hardware store at 105th Street and Broadway opened more than 10 years ago.
After hearing countless customers there say they were moving to Inwood because of rising rents, they knew upper Manhattan was worth checking out.
“Everyone was moving uptown,” Ali said. “When we came up we were amazed to see how diverse the community actually is.”
Residents say they have been urgently waiting for months for a convenient hardware store to buy everything from nails and paint to irons and brooms. Residents were seen peering inside the store from a glass door where a sign promising the store would open in two weeks hung for far longer.
“It’s ridiculous that I have to either go to the Bronx or downtown to buy materials,” said Inwood resident Martha Barrow. “I just want someplace close to home that has a good selection and isn’t necessarily a chain.”
Natalie and Carlos Hornillos, who were shopping with their 7-year-old daughter, Carmen, said location is key.
“It’s on our route: church, hardware store, supermarket and back home,” said Carlos Hornillos.
Convenience was the most mentioned factor in Inwood resident’s excitement about the store opening.
For years, shopping at a hardware store in Inwood meant hopping the train downtown, visiting multiple smaller convenience stores to find several items or visiting a big box store like Target in the Bronx.
“Having a store like this in the neighborhood means not having to wait in line after 20 people for one item at Target,” said Natalie Hornillos. “And sometimes it’s just not convenient to walk to Target from Inwood.”
Ali said the new store, which he runs with his brothers Adam and Abbi, will soon be fully stocked. He said he is ready to supply the neighborhood with suggested items.
“People have been coming in all weekend saying they are surprised to find a place like this that they have really needed,” he said. “Everyone is excited and so are we.”